Celebrity chef scammed by fake cop

Celebrity chef scammed by fake cop

Real police catch dine-and-dash culprit who left without paying B2,310 bill at Jay Fai

Supinya “Jay Fai” Junsuta prepares a meal at her restaurant off Maha Chai Road in the Samran Rat area of Bangkok. (Photo: Jetjaras Na Ranong)
Supinya “Jay Fai” Junsuta prepares a meal at her restaurant off Maha Chai Road in the Samran Rat area of Bangkok. (Photo: Jetjaras Na Ranong)

A man who ate at the Michelin-starred street food restaurant of Supinya “Jay Fai” Junsuta without paying his bill was not a plainclothes police inspector as he claimed, police said on Friday.

The star-studded chef posted on her Instagram account, @jayfaibangkok, that she was searching for a man who claimed to be a police officer on urgent business. He cut into a queue, finished his meal and then left without paying his 2,310-baht bill on Thursday afternoon, she said.

For the record, the man ordered her famous crab omelette to take away and beef phad kaphrao for dining in.

Jay Fai, 78, later filed a complaint with the Samran Rat Police Station.

The man was nabbed on Friday after police reviewed security video from the area. He was questioned before being taken to the restaurant, where he apologised to the legendary chef-owner.

He said he did not intend to skip out on the bill. He just forgot to pay because he was in a rush to pick up his car from a garage where it was being serviced.

The man was not an inspector but a retired local authority officer who claimed to have a problem with his memory, said Pol Col Todsapol Ampaipiphatkul, the Samran Rat station superintendent.

Jay Fai did not press charges. She said she would ensure her staff are more thorough in future in terms of collecting payment.

However, officers said they would investigate further the report of the man impersonating a police officer.

According to Pol Col Todsapol, eating at a restaurant without paying is theft under Section 345 of the Criminal Code, with a fine of up to 5,000 baht and/or a maximum of three months in jail.

Jay Fai is the owner of a street-side restaurant in the Pratu Phi area of Phra Nakhon district. Her food has been popular with those in the know for decades, but she shot to global fame when her humble eatery was awarded a star in the Bangkok 2018 Michelin Guide.

Since then, it has been a must-visit on the itineraries of celebrities from Russell Crowe to Ed Sheeran and Lalisa "Lisa Blackpink" Manoban.

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